Faraz’s teaching style brought out both the fine technical points of Arabic grammar as well as an overarching framework for sorting through a large amount of information. I feel more practically equipped to read texts of my interest after his class.
I have taken dozens of Arabic courses at multiple universities in the United States and abroad, and Faraz is by far the best Arabic Grammar instructor I have ever had. Many Arabic programs take either one of two approaches– a very classical approach emphasizing rote memorization with little explanation as to how certain rules relate to each other; or an immersive approach in which the student gets exposed to dozens of readings and is expected to pick up on grammar concepts implicitly but is given little background knowledge of the mechanics of grammar. Faraz not only combines the best of both the immersive and classical approaches, but he also builds upon both by using modern pedagogical methods to improve upon them.
Using charts, graphs, and old-fashioned academic research to give students a very holistic learning experience, with Faraz students are first introduced to new grammar concepts in a systematic way. After a concept is taught, they then learn how the concept is related to other rules they have already learned, and why a certain rule functions as it does. Knowing the “why”–a question rarely addressed in grammar courses–is very important as it helps students understand how the rules related to each other. They then learn how to apply their knowledge of these new concepts using readings and exercises coming from actual classical texts.
In lieu of being reliant on a couple of grammar manuals, students under his approach become independent researchers, capable of moving forward on their own in terms of research and applied grammar skills with little fear. His approach is hands down the best I have experienced, and takes advantage of the best aspects of what prior modes of teaching Arabic had to offer.
Faraz is one of the best Arabic instructors I’ve ever had. He completely unravelled the often intimidating elements of Arabic grammar into lucid lessons without ever overwhelming us. His care and concern for teaching were evident in the way he devised his own methods to organize and explain Arabic grammar when the textbook fell short. When I started his class, I had a weak foundation in Arabic grammar, but I’m now very confident about my knowledge thanks to him.
As a student who has studied three intensive semesters with Faraz, I can confidently say that his teaching style and system are excellent. I was taken from a level where I did not know any Arabic to a level where I could continue to read and understand classical texts by myself. I strongly recommend Faraz to anyone seeking knowledge in the Arabic language.
Not only is the instructor very knowledgeable in Arabic syntax and grammar, but he’s able to explain it in a way that makes sense to non-Arabic speakers, myself included. I was able to come away with a basic grammatical understanding of Quranic Arabic in that I can now recognize variations in recitation and meaning….All of this and I was in the Part-Time course. I highly recommend this course to anyone wanting to create a solid foundation in understanding Arabic grammar.
I found Ustadh Faraz to be kind yet rigorous. From the outset, his stated goal for us was mastery of the material, and it is wonderful when the teacher is aiming for this, and gives one the means to reach it. His years of teaching experience translates to very clear exposition and well-chosen questions that effectively test and consolidate understanding. He also employs extensive drilling of fundamental knowledge, which proves to be a strong means of establishing a very firm foundation. I very much enjoyed being his student and hope to study under him again in the future.